'What's it for', Jamie asks, after I shove a tsp of a delicous oxymel I made a month back into his mouth. It's sweet and luxurious, made of tulsi basil, mugwort and lavender.
'To strengthen your psychic antennae,' I say, watching his face. I'm sure it's not the vinegar making his face screw into an Elmer Fudd like expression. He laughs. 'You don't really believe that, do you?'
I think of last nights dream, which I don't feel comfortable talking about here because of it's deeply personal nature. Today I woke up feeling a little melancholy, but held the dream close to my heart. It'll give me answers over the next week - even in the early dawn I lay hugging it to my heart, a warm and precious thing.
'Of course I do,' I say. He's unconvinced. Says there's no such thing as 'psychic' or 'clairvoyant' and whilst he knows mugwort used to be an ingredient in beer, tulsi's relaxing and lavender helps with headaches, he's unconvinced about the 'psychic' aspect of this beautiful trinity.
I say that 'psychic' is just a way of recognising intuition and deep listening, tuning into all the sensory world that gives us signs of what might come, and to some extent, what people are thinking. I remind him of all the times we've intuited exactly what each other has been thinking, telepathically connected, the ideas we have arrived at at the same time. Inexplicable, maybe. Or perhaps that ability to tune in to all the messages that are floating in the ether around us. We close off our minds to so much, unwilling to listen or walking in a fog of our own self made illusions. But we are powerful too. Sometimes all we have to do is think about a person and we will see them the next day. What is that if not a psychic ability? Sometimes we don't see it until it happens, recalling we dreamt about it weeks ago, the day before. We dismiss it as coincidence.
By the time I finish explaining what I believe, he gets it. Sometimes it's just the word 'psychic' that turns people off. I get it.
This oxymel recipe tastes decadant and full of plant spirit, luxurious and divine. I love it straight, letting the taste permeate my mouth, the magic of the herbs absorbed through the skin and into my bloodstream, a little tingly pleasure, as if I have partaken of the herb goddesses and found them kind and loving. It's a sensual experience. It's nice in sparkling water too.
It's a recipe I found in a book by Erin Lovell Verinder called Plants for the People: A Modern Guide to Plant Medicine - highly recommended, especially if you're new to making herbal preparations. She got it herself from Lauren Haynes of Wooden Spoon Herbs.
'Tune In' Intuition Enhancing Oxymel
1 cup of dried tulsi leaf
1 cup dried mugwort leaves/flowers
1/2 cup of dried lavender flowers
raw apple cider vinegar
raw local honey
Combine the herbal ingredients into a sterilised jar and pour over vinegar until the jar looks half full. Add honey til the jar is nearly full. Cover with waxed brown paper then fasten the lid - this will stop the vinegar corroding the metal - and allow to infused for half a moon cycle. Mine sat for two moon cycles. Strain and enjoy.
What's your favourite oxymel?
How do you use mugwort?
Have you got any experience with lucid dreaming?
Do you believe that psychic abilities are possible?